Omphalitis |Clinical Symptoms & Treatment - POULTRY MANIA
Omphalitis in poultry

Omphalitis |Clinical Symptoms & Treatment

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Omphalitis In Poultry

Omphalitis, also known as yolk_sac_infection, Nevel ill and “‘ Mushy Chicks Disease”. It is the main infectious cause of death in newly hatched chicks, during their first week of life. It is most commonly caused by infection with Escherichia coli bacteria (approximately 70% of cases). however other bacterial infections like salmonella can also be the causes of early chick mortality.

Common Causes for Omphalitis

Chicks can become infected during incubation, while hatching, or when in the brooder.

If clean eggs are incubated and hatched together with contaminated eggs, if eggs from one source are put together with eggs from a different source….all these can lead to a disease outbreak.

If the brooder is not well cleaned and disinfected,

If the temperature is not sufficient to help in closure of the navel

Clinical Symptoms

The most common clinical symptoms of the omphalitis of poultry depend on birds. In some cases, symptoms arise early just after hatch chicks due to incomplete hatching period.
However, Initial clinical symptoms after 3 days in the filed.

Signs of yolk sac infection

  • Closed eyes. Some eyes may have mucus and red in color
  • DejectionLoss of appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Watery diarrhea sometimes confusing enteric coccidiosis

See Also- Drugs for Enteric coccidiosis

  • Vent pasting
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Navel oozing out water
  • Some chicks may fail to walk and just lie down

Post-mortem finding

Despite all clinical symptoms, It is easily diagnosed by the naked eye after postmortem findings.

omphalitis in poultry
Look at the picture, Nevel is surrounded by the white layer skin which is indicated, chicks are suffering from the omphalitis in poultry


An open wound on the navel leads to the entry of bacteria, and in most cases Escherichia coli leading to colibacillosis infection. It’s of great importance to notice this at either arrival of the chicks or after 6 to 12 hours and start treatment with a combination of broad-spectrum antibiotics available in the market. The common drugs for treating omphalitis in poultry are- Florfenicol, Neomycin sulfate, Enrofloxacin, Levofloxacin, etc. In severe cases, when mortality reaches up to 20%, drugs may use in two or three combinations for water medication. According to field response, florfenicol and Neomycin salt has a tremendous spectrum on omphalitis infection which is commonly caused by the gram-negative bacteria according to the pharmaceutical direction.

See Also- Diseases of broiler and Treatment


The disease is prevented by careful control of temperature, humidity, and sanitation in the incubator. Only clean, uncracked eggs should be set in the incubator.  If it is necessary not to set dirty eggs, they should be segregated from clean eggs.

Sanitizing detergents must be used according to directions if eggs are washed. Time, temperature, and frequent changes of water are as critical as the concentration of sanitizer in both wash and rinse water. The rinse should be warmer than the wash water (which should be warmer than the internal temperature of the egg) but should not be >60°C.

Precautionary Measures

Farmers are supposed to carry out proper cleaning and disinfection of their poultry brooders before receiving chicks. the farmer must start the brooder with clean and treated water, free from bacteria. All the equipment used in the brooder should be disinfected before putting them in the brooder. The non-contaminated feed should be used for the first 7 days of a  chick’s life, which gives better growth and a better life to chicksControl brooder temperatures using behavioral changes that chicks show you or using thermometers in the brooder.

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